When I am headed somewhere on a trip I typically go online to see if any concerts or other performances are taking place while I'm there. Luckily I discovered that St. Andrews had a Choral Festival in full swing the night before the TurfNet group's arrival in Scotland.
Bjarte Eike and Barokksolistene -- baroque musicians from Norway touring as The Alehouse Boys -- were performing their Alehouse Sessions in a venue with a twist. Rather than setting up in an auditorium, the festival transformed a student dining hall on the campus of St. Andrews University into a 1600's era local pub.
I met with Bjarte in advance of the performance. He explained that their Alehouse Sessions performances are an always evolving glimpse into the music of a 17th Century tavern. The instruments were accurate for the period of the mid-1600s. Bjarke explained that when Lord Cromwell closed down most of the theaters that the actors and musicians moved into the local pubs and performed a variety of tunes and dances to the delight of the local community. For nearly two hours the audience was treated to a very special night of entertainment.
An interview with Bjarte and a sample of their music below:
Along the lines of "good fortune" -- for them and us -- the St. Andrews Brewing Company was supplying the beer for the event. After a short chat with the owner I determined that their pub would be ideal for our group's "evening out" (hosted by Mike Cook of The Care of Trees) later in the week.
A few email exchanges later and the entire evening was "sorted", as the lingo goes over here.
For me at least, an auspicious start to what I hope proves to be a great week for the TurfNet group in Scotland.